Madison’s MNA Board Hides How They Voted On Canopy Nightclub

Here we go again.  And with a glaring example as to why my beating the drum for years about having a public record of the ayes and nays from the Marquette Neighborhood Association Board matters.  To even be required to post about such a problem from the progressive and liberal Madison isthmus in 2020 is most unpleasant.

This week the Board voted on the highly controversial Canopy Nightclub proposal for Willaimson Street.   This blog has not been shy about why it needs to be rejected by the city.

While the Board did not support the nightclub and will send a letter to the city, what was left unsaid says much more about the process of transparency that the Board refuses to deal with.  The Board passed the measure with 8 votes.  But what is not noted is which members voted otherwise and what was said to support their vote? Also, who abstained and what was stated as to why?  This is important to know and share in moving forward.

Not knowing how Board members voted, and having no record of the ayes and nays being recorded is simply unacceptable.  We all need to become vocal about it and this is the time.  To have some of the Board rationalize they cannot stand the heat of public discourse based on their votes means they might decide joining a book club is more to their liking than asking for election (or appointment) to the Board.  How can we be informed voters without having to attend every meeting and observe every vote?

Enough of the cowardice from the MNA Board!

Madison Neighborhood Assc. Board Accused Of Bullying

At a recent meeting of the Marquette Neighborhood Association Board, when replacements were named for two openings, a woman stood and asked that there be training so to deal with bullying.   MNA member Anne Walker was succinct and not deterred as the Board tired to shut her down.

“That is something that has been a long-term problem at MNA and certainly more information could be made available to the Board, should the Board choose to pursue it, which it really hasn’t.  I see the MNA Board having three problems.  One, there is bullying going on, two you are not acknowledging it, and three you are not dealing with it. So now you have put someone back on the Board…….”

It was then the Board, who protects their own, tried to shut the meeting down.  But Walker continued to speak out over the growing clamor for an adjournment to stress that  UW-Extension has some excellent classes that can help the Board.

“This is an issue that you need to pursue.”

So it does require asking, since $1,000 was placed aside for training, what actually does the Board plan to do so to understand that bullying tactics of the members can not continue?  I know one of the Board members thought an online course might suffice.  I do not want those in their skivvies glancing at the screen as they open their mail or make a meal.  The serious issue which Walker and others have raised demands that the money allocated for the training takes place in a structured manner with serious and sober Board members paying attention.

And learning.

This neighborhood association cries out for actual leadership. A genuine and meaningful conversation must take place so that those with perspectives and experiences which differ from the elected (and now appointed board) are not treated in the fashion as the emails prove to be the case.  I was more than stunned when reading the ‘c’ word was used by a Board member about a woman in an email.  Perhaps these emails will need to be made public to underscore the issue at hand.

I am proud of those who have taken the time to literally stand up to the Board and not cower when faced with their blowback.  Our neighborhood is a grand place to live as we have the best that an isthmus can provide, a robust research university in our city, along with state government.  There are so many credible places the Board can turn to for guidance on how to conduct themselves in a professional manner they are bound to find at least one to their liking.

But to do nothing substantive to curtail the bullying that Walker and others have presented is not tenable.

Canopy Nightclub Adds To Alcohol Overload On Madison’s Williamson Street

There is much concern about the impact the proposed Canopy Nightclub will have on the Williamson Street neighborhood, which consists of homeowners and renters with children and others who are retired.  Placing a nightclub with even a ‘reduced’ capacity of 296 into a residential community is simply audacious.  The owners had threatened to ask for a capacity of 375.  They must know they are not going to be popular with local folks.  Only the owner of the property, Chuck Chvala, the former state senator who was convicted in the State Capitol caucus scandal, comes out with a smile.

One of the members of the Marquette Neighborhood Association took a few hours over the past couple of days and dedicated them to number crunching regarding the alcohol density in this neighborhood.  The results are embarrassing for a place that prides itself on being socially aware and progressive.  What the numbers show is that many who live here might not be any more able to live a sober life than those who make for the great novels of old Russia.

Here then are the findings of this most progressive place in Madison.  As the compilator of the numbers alerted readers on the neighborhood listserv the data is 95% accurate.

Did you know that the Marquette neighborhood had 6,105 residents in 2010 (12.2% of which were age 17 or younger)?  Knocking off the under age 17 group leaves 5,360 residents. 

Did you know that there currently exists 4,431 seats where one can get a drink in the neighborhood (plus event places including Elks, Sylvee, Old Sugar’s event space)?   

Did you know that of those alcohol seats, there are 2,458 where one can be entertained (1,514 of those seats are on E Washington)?  That no Williamson Street entertainment establishment has a capacity greater than 99 (now that Prism is gone)?

4,735 capacity for drinking

2,302 capacity for primarily drinking/entertainment

1,822 capacity for licensed entertainment establishments

Canopy would increase the total number of seats by 17% (not including E Washington establishments).  Increase of 375, currently 2,228.

Canopy would increase the total number of primary drinking seats by 70% (not including E Washington establishments).  Increase of 375, currently 537.

Canopy would increase the total number of entertainment seats by 63% (not including E Washington establishments).  Increase of 375, currently 596.

The highest capacity for a primarily drinking establishment (other than on E Washington) is 99.

The highest capacity for any establishment (other than on E Washington) is Sardine at 218.  Second biggest is I/O Arcade at 155, third is Buraka at 126.  Everything else is 100 or less.

Total MNA 2010 population: 6,105

Total MNA 2010 population over age 17: 5,360

Population increase from 2010-2019?  There were 306 housing units added (projects that required approvals) plus a few others (such as the new house at the Baldwin/Wilson corner).  So even with a population of approximately 6,000 drinking age adults, there is approximately 1 drinking seat for every 3 drinking age adults.

I am never sure what makes people want to waste a life in a bottle or glass.  I feel like I never have a day to waste or a time that I do not want to recall down the road. Good days or bad ones.  Being an adult requires being able to cope with life sober-minded. There are also professionals to talk with at points in life when issues need to be addressed.  When both of my parents died I reached out to talk with someone who allowed me to understand grief and work through it.  I never had a single drink at either of their passings.  In fact, that notion never even crossed my mind.

What I do know is the data shows what impact sitting for hours with a bent elbow does to society.  I wish my college-educated and progressive neighborhood would grasp that fact, too.

And so it goes.

Canopy Nightclub, Cacophony Gearing Up For Williamson Street Neighborhood

When it comes to 924 Willaimson Street there are not many fond memories for the residents of the neighborhood unless they recall back prior to the arrival of Plan B, a gay bar where music blared too loud, and drunken crowds roamed the streets.  What was not to love?

Many residents recall with fondness the camera store that had been a business anchor on the block.  But then a change started to come to that portion of Willaimson Street.  For some of the ‘bright lights’ among the business crowd, it seemed easier to make bucks selling drinks than creating ideas about how various small shops could be assembled to add to the residential aspect of the neighborhood.

Let us be honest. Plan B was a public nuisance.  For the families in the area with kids in bed early at night, and parents needing to be alert come the start of another day, the nightclub was clearly a very bad decision made by the local neighborhood association along with the city.   After a number of years the drinkers and dancers tired of their playground, and the establishment underwent a name change.  Nothing, however, could salvage their business plan and the place closed.

Needless to say, the locals who are homeowners or renters were pleased.  The sad men who use Grindr, not so much.

Recently the neighborhood learned that a new business team, wishing to cram 375 drinkers into their nightclub, is filling out the paperwork and pressing the flesh with movers and shakers in the right offices and social circles. They seem intent on opening Canopy Nightclub within weeks.  Barring the process of a conditional use permit, which can slow any proposal down severely, noise and parking problems are soon to again be a part of this neighborhood.

In 2008 Madison Alderwoman Marsha Rummel wrote the following to the Plan Commission.

I support the application with conditions -some from the meeting held on Monday- and others from talking with staff, immediate neighbors, and MNA Board members. I think the applicants will create an instant hit with their vision and I think it could be an exciting addition to the neighborhood.

She then added this truth.

But there is a significant minority who are opposed to the proposal because of concerns about impacts on the quality of life. Most think the capacity is too large and some are alarmed by recent incidents of alcohol/bar related violence downtown. The calls and emails I’ve received since Monday have been largely opposed.

All are now aware, as should be the alder, that placing a nightclub into a residential neighborhood is like slapping a medium-rare steak onto the plate of a vegetarian.  Nothing good can follow. 

Former Marquette Neighborhood Association President Lynn Lee, living a block away from the booming bass music emitted from the club, even went so far as to paint canvasses of art to sell at a local festival so to raise money to ensure Plan B remodeled their roof.  At the time I still respected Lee and bought a print for $200.00.  But no one in the area should have to hawk his or her wares just to get a good night’s sleep!

The owner of the property, but not the proposed new business owners, is Chuck Chvala, the former state senator who was convicted in the state Capitol caucus scandal.

Your voice is needed if you feel that bar crowds and children sleeping at night do not mix.  You should express yourself if you feel, as a renter, you should have a parking place at the end of your day as opposed to it being taken by a vehicle for a nightclub drinking spree.  You should alert city officials if you feel, as a taxpayer, that your need to sleep peacefully should not be hindered from car noises and rowdy folks who are tanked.

Here is some information that will lead you in the directions that will be most meaningful when you reach out to raise your objections.  Thanks.

Upcoming Canopy Nightclub Review Meetings

Meeting by the new owners of the proposed bar, Canopy.

Wed, Jan 8, Time? Wil-Mar Neighborhood Center

MNA P&D Meeting

Tues, Jan 14, 5:30 pm. Wil-Mar

To sign up for the agenda and announcements, write: Jack Kear <jackkear@hotmail.com>,

ALRC  Alcohol License Review Committee

Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2020 at 5:30 pm.

City-County Building, 210 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd, Room 201

https://www.cityofmadison.com/clerk/meeting-schedule/alcohol-license-review-committee-58

Marquette Neighborhood Association Board Meeting

Mon, Jan 20, 7pm. Wil-Mar

https://marquette-neighborhood.org/

Plan Commission (?)

Agendas and minutes: https://www.cityofmadison.com/dpced/planning/plan-commission/1577/

Marquette Neighborhood Association Board Causing Concern For Members

The differences, as of late, within the Marquette Neighborhood Association are not over the issuance of new liquor licenses or the fate of some new proposed development.  Rather it is over the manner in which the MNA Board, elected by the membership, is acting towards the membership.

Not for the first time do I post about an organization that has lost my faith due to their illiberal actions.  Not allowing for the posting of vote tallies at the yearly annual election for the Board, or recording the ayes and nays of votes by the Board at meetings is akin to what takes place in banana republics.   Though I was told by a business owner on Williamson Street in 2007 that the Board was “a little Communist society” I only then laughed at the quip.  That could not be a serious comment.

But with the continued lack of process-oriented actions by the Board one does need to reflect again on the line that I heard as James and I prepared to offer to pay (through an estate) for new park benches at B.B. Clarke Beach.  What has caused much concern and discussion as of late is the way residents who hold opposing views from the Board have been belittled.  I would go further and state residents have been bullied by more than one Board member.

Next week there will be two very oddly timed and questionable vacancies of the Board filled by the President.  Thirty-three percent of the members elected in October has resigned.  I am most interested, given the climate and tone of the Board, to see if there is any recognition that the atmosphere has been sullied by their behavior towards the membership.  If the Board turns a blind eye to their past actions and places into the vacancies, anyone who has proved to be responsible for the bullying and disrespect, then we have the answer as to how the next year will play out.  The membership will have to dig in and continue to press for change and call out the bad and illiberal behavior and actions.

As a member posted to the listserv this week, “Neighbors are being called names.  Their concerns have been disregarded.  Is it really a surprise that people are uncomfortable?”

Given the track record of the MNA Board over the past five years this blogger is expecting nothing to change.  Come Monday the deck chairs will likely not change position and the same behavior and unacceptable lack of openness and transparency will continue.

Maybe the MNA Board is nothing more than the business person opined.

 

 

33% Of Newly Elected MNA Board In Madison Resigns

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I attended the MNA Board Meeting where it was announced J. Cheema has resigned from the Board.  There are now TWO vacancies to be filled at the next meeting, December 16th.  It was announced that members can self-nominate through noon Dec 13th.

I find it interesting how, once the Board positions are filled, there is a possibility that the Executive officers may change.  I found it most interesting that this matter was not only mentioned tonight, but it was repeated.  I also find it odd that a person selected to fill in a vacancy might sit on the Executive Committee over a board member who was duly elected by the membership at the October meeting.    This is a matter which requires the attention of the membership.

We now have the second resignation of an MNA Board member who had their name on the October ballot and was elected by the membership.   Collen Hayes was the first person to do so, which generated much discussion over the past weeks.  Cheema is now the second person to vacate a seat, though the Board gave no date as to her resignation.  There were only six candidates who won the election to the board this fall and now 33% of them have resigned. 

Given the issues which surrounded the move by Collen, and now with another vacancy, I ask that the Board President Anita Krasno release the letters or texts or parchment with the written notifications for each vacancy.   No one can claim that such a release of this information will ‘embarrass anyone’. (Though one may be most telling.)  The membership has a right to read both of these notifications.

One has to ask why two candidates who ran for the Board, and were elected, have chosen to resign within weeks of the election, and what motivated their actions?

I trust there will be thoughtful people who will offer their time for the one-year Board positions.

MNA Board Missed Jed Bartlet Moment Of Truth, Dodged Personal Responsibility

A  sizable and vocal crowd gathered Monday night on the Madison isthmus for the monthly meeting of the Marquette Neighborhood Association. Over the past several weeks there has much rancor over the events that took place at the yearly membership meeting when board elections were held.

Collen Hayes, a current board member sought re-election at that meeting, having her letter of intent read to the membership as she was absent.  Then things got needlessly murky.  After the balloting for this quasi-governmental board was completed word reached the members gathered at the Wil-Mar Center that Hayes had somehow decided not to serve another term.

Later that evening I was informed via telephone that of the seven members up for election, Board President Lynn Lee received the fewest number of votes.  Madison Alderwoman Marsha Rummel was in the room at the time of the balloting and took a phone picture of the final tally.  With Lynn losing the election, and a sudden reversal of intent from a candidate after the members had cast their ballots, meant a local Rubicon had been crossed.

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Within 48 hours concerned members of the neighborhood started working on a strategy at a local home where many folks assembled.  For transparency to my readers, I was one of those seeking redress to the election.

I have pressed the Board, during the term of President Lee, to create a cleaner, more open, and transparent process of conducting business.  In fact, it was a year ago in October I wrote on the public list-serv in our neighborhood that the vote tallies for the annual meeting should be made public.  Lee, in one of his usual defensive modes, stated that no such data would be made public.  One has to wonder why.

Had there been an open process at the membership meeting regarding the tallies from this year the members would have known that Lee received the least votes cast.  And it would have placed the self- removal of Hayes into a better perspective for the membership to consider.

In the days after the voting results became known this sorry story devolved into a discussion of executive abuse when the MNA president (Lee) threatened those seeking redress with the withdrawal of MNA financial support for the Willy Street Park.  The email with his words is truly unsettling.

At Monday’s meeting, a motion was put forth from the board to attempt a remedy to this mess.  It read as follows.

Motion to treat Colleen Hayes’ withdrawal as a candidate for the MNA Board of Directors as a resignation and to take appropriate action according to Section 6.02(g) of the bylaws to fill the seat. And to direct the MNA Vice President to implement the process.

When asked by a lawyer in the crowd for the board to read the letter submitted from Hayes, so to have a factual definition of what she actually stated, and also what time the letter was written and received, there was a stonewalling that would have made Richard Nixon proud.  The board was not going to engage in any attempt to clarify the matter and stated several times for the good of the various projects underway, the work in committees, and the greater needs of the neighborhood they wanted harmony and a forward look.

Had the audience been super quiet the words of Bill Clinton could be heard from 1997, ” I need to go back to work for the American people.”

One member in support of the board, and a family member to the president, stood and tried to explain that the members of the board were super busy at the October meeting as they were putting on a chili supper and running the meeting at the same time.  They could not be expected to know all that happened over the Hayes matter.   And from the Monday night meeting, it was most clear they were not either curious enough to find out or mature enough to admit a glaring problem and take personal responsibility.

Which leads me to President Jeb Bartlet on NBC’s drama West Wing. When he offered to be censured by Congress for less than candid answers about his health and MS condition, he told his White House Chief Of Staff that no one in Washington takes the blame for anything anymore.  Therefore no one is ever held responsible for anything that goes wrong.  As such he stepped up to the front of the line and endured the political punches by doing the right thing on the award-winning TV drama.

If only the MNA Board could have mimicked television last night. More often than not when there are serious lapses in judgment, as occurred at the October meeting, there is much finger-pointing and artful dodges along the way.  But little in true accountability ever surfaces.  We learn of the mistakes but rarely hear, as Bartlet said, anyone taking any self-blame.

The motion passed on a unanimous vote.  Based on the performance of the Board at the membership meeting, and the refusal for anyone to take personal responsibility last night, means close attention to the actions of the board will need to continue.

There are no Jed Bartlets on this MNA Board.

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MNA Board Elections And The Loss Of Virtue, Scorn From Membership

This post is going to be a rather long one as I will shine a light on a troubling aspect to the wonderful community which I am proud to call home.  The streets in our neighborhood are named for the signers of the Constitution.  Being a life-long history buff, at times talking about the Founding Fathers by their first names, and deeply wedded to a process in governing that demands for transparency and fairness, means I must speak out.  Walking each day with reminders of the people who gave so much to create a nation, and a way of making government operate is no small thing.  It may seem old-fashioned to convey such thoughts as I will in this post but this is how my DNA was constructed.  Frankly, we need more people schooled to view issues through the light of civics.

My dad–and yes–for the sake of understanding the intent of this post requires a short journey back to my childhood.   I recall dad going to visit a man in his home prior to a monthly board meeting of the Hancock Town Board of Supervisors.  The man had a medical condition that prevented him from being mobile and had called dad so to present his views and have them added alongside those who would be in attendance. I  could say that was ‘dad being dad’, but it also was something more.  He held to a series of convictions about public service and how one conducts themselves when allowed to carry responsibilities from the electorate.  The people knew my dad to be honorable which helped him to be elected to office for over 40 straight years.

So that is the stock from which I came, the foundation of governing which I watched play out from an early age when it was customary for monthly meetings to be held in homes of officials on a rotating basis.  A fond memory is being able to sit with ‘the guys’ eating a brownie mom had made for the board before being told it was bedtime.

Recently in Madison, at the Marquette Neighborhood Association’s Annual Meeting, all those homey images of local folks coming together for the needs and betterment of the area were spun on its head following the most unusual election of officers.  Collen Hayes, a current board member sought re-election, having her letter of intent read to the membership as she was absent.  Then things get needlessly murky.  After the balloting for this quasi-governmental board was completed word reaches the members gathered at the Wil-Mar Center that Hayes had somehow decided not to serve another term.  As a former radio news reporter who can smell a story, it was clear this issue had legs and would rush for the exits.

Within 48 hours concerned members of the neighborhood started working on a letter sent to the board.  For transparency to my readers, I note my name was added to those of others seeking redress.

We, the undersigned, are asking that the Board follow the procedures in the Bylaws to replace a Board director when they resign. We believe that following the Bylaws is the best way to provide for fair and transparent elections.
 
Colleen Hayes was a candidate for the MNA Board.  Her bio was read to the membership, and members cast votes for her.  A count of votes was taken in which Colleen was elected as one of the 6 new Board members.  Then, between the count and the announcement, Colleen resigned, leaving one vacancy in the 6 seats.  However, MNA’s Vice President announced that because Colleen resigned, the remaining 6 candidates were elected.
 
Colleen Hayes was elected as a director.  A director can opt to resign at any time, by a written communication to the Board (Bylaws 5.03).  When a director resigns, a vacancy is created.  The Bylaws, section 6.02, provide how a vacancy should be filled. We ask that the Board follow that procedure in selecting the replacement for the elected director who resigned immediately after the vote tally, thereby creating a vacancy.

The procedure specified in the Bylaws is:

Bylaws 5.03:  “A Director may resign at any time by delivering his or her written resignation that complies with the provisions of ch. 181, Stats., to the Board of Directors, the chairperson of the Board of Directors, or the Corporation.”  

Bylaws 6.02(g): provides that the president has authority to “fill the vacancy until the annual meeting next following the date on which the vacancy arose, provided that: (1) the president shall (i) provide promptly after the vacancy arises reasonable notice thereof to the membership of the Corporation along with notice that persons interested in being appointed to fill the vacancy so notify the president within a reasonable period of not less than 1 (one) week from the date of the notice and (ii) make the appointment promptly after such period, provided that the president may appoint someone, whose household or business is a member of the Corporation but who did not notify the president of interest in being appointed in response to the notice required by Subsection 6.02(g)(1)(i); (2) to be reasonable, the notice required by Subsection 6.02(g)(1)(i) need not be mailed using the US Postal Service; and (3) the Board approves the appointment no later than at its first regular meeting after the appointment is made.”

We ask that the Board reconsider the action taken at the membership meeting.  We request that the Board inform the membership of Colleen’s resignation and the date of her resignation as identified in her written communication. We ask that the procedures specified in the Bylaws be followed to fill her position. We believe that following the Bylaws is the best, and only, way to provide for fair and transparent elections of Board directors.
 
We would appreciate your response by Friday, November 1.

I have pressed the Board, during the term of President Lynn Lee, to create a cleaner, more open, and transparent process of conducting business.  In fact, it was almost a year to the day I wrote on the public list-serv in our neighborhood that the vote tallies for the annual meeting should be made public.  Lee, in one of his usual defensive modes, stated that no such data would be made public.  The vote totals from ballots cast by the dues-paying members would be kept secret.  Had there been an open process regarding the tallies from this year the members at the meeting would know that Lee received the least votes cast.  And it would have placed the self- removal of Hayes into a better perspective for the membership to consider.

Thanks to process-driven people, we now know the vote totals as written down by a counter of the ballots.

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I do not post such news for any other purpose than to shine a light on what is the right of every resident residing within the boundaries of this association to know.  The very thing I have openly called for over the years.  Being open and transparent, and being willing to place oneself before the voting public does not mean that only victories will be reported.  In all elections, there are those who win and others who we say thanks to for stepping up and offering to serve.   But NOWHERE should we ever except a weak reason that hiding vote tallies are designed to blunt embarrassment.  Good Lord, if a person is not able to be graceful in defeat after an election means they are most likely not of the timber to be capable as an officeholder.

The storm concerns the Board who argues Hayes did not resign from the board, but withdrew her candidacy for another term, leaving six candidates for six available seats.  Meaning that Lee–who received the least votes–would still serve on the Board.   But then there are those stubborn facts.  Hayes was not removed from the ballot.  She remained on the ballot, her statement was read to the members at the meeting with no indication that she was not a candidate.  Members voted for her in good faith, and she was elected.

Over the past week, there have been some very sad spectacles on the listserv which underscores the low regard that the process of elections is taken by some in our neighborhood association.

Hayes, had sent a note to Bob Queen, with this most unsettling message.

I am that candidate. And I did withdraw just because I am too damn busy to be on the board. I am a fan of intrigue so wish it was more exciting than that. And, Jack is correct, in all my time serving on the board we have never shared the numbers.

One does have to ask how her “damn busy” schedule was not known to her just mere hours–or even minutes–before the balloting started?

Then there are the words from, as noted on the listserv, Lee’s sister-in-law, Beth Rosen.

Three votes between Colleen and Lynn? That is the difference between them? ….The process was fine. There were six willing candidates for six seats. No candidate actually lost. The outcome is fair and just.

Case closed.

I am not sure how anyone gets so jaded that the absolute will, as expressed by a ballot box, is lost from rational thinking.

This truly sad series of events takes me back to the start of this post about the Founding Fathers who stressed the need for virtue among the citizenry, and those wishing to serve in elected office.  Virtue is one of those words that too few use anymore, but a word that the original shapers of this nation used often.  We can define the term as conduct reflecting universal principles of moral and ethical excellence essential to leading a worthwhile life and necessary when it comes to our style of governing in this nation.

John Adams is known as deeply molded to his strict view of liberty and order.  To achieve such ends required that virtuous people lead the nation, and virtuous citizens attend to lifting up those leaders.  Adams was always disdainful of those who wanted offices for their own gain.

“How is it possible that any man should ever think of making it subservient to his own little passions and mean private interests? 

How to channel the desire for liberty while understanding the passions of man, is why the checks and balances were applied so artfully into the construct of our government.  To control the factions, thin out popular passions, and allow for forward movement required a process of governing that would address differences among people.  The integrity of the ballot box was one such avenue the Founders knew to be the answer.

The local elections in our association are truly concerning to me.  In closing, I offer the words from President George Washington who gave this advice about virtue.  In his final Farewell Address, Washington united his reasoning on behalf of virtue and those in public office.

It is substantially true that virtue or morality is a necessary spring of popular government. The rule, indeed, extends with more or less force to every species of free government. Who that is a sincere friend to it can look with indifference upon attempts to shake the foundation of the fabric?

That is why many in this neighborhood have taken a stand.  They may not phrase it as such, or ponder it from a historical perspective, but the seed of good governing still lives in the soul of this neighborhood.  That is why we have not stayed quiet this past week, nor will we be muted in the days to come.

May it always be so.